What Are Text-Enabled Toll-Free Numbers?

What is a text-enabled toll-free number?  

Text-enabled toll-free numbers are numbers that are not assigned to mobile devices but rather are assigned to businesses as standard phone numbers.  These numbers can still receive standard SMS text messages, and text messages can be sent from these numbers, after going through a special provisioning process.  This process, called "text-enabling," does not interfere in any way with the voice operations of the number.  It does not affect the service, billing, provider or functions of the voice side of the number at all.  It simply provides a way to send and receive texts using that number.  

TextPower has become a specialist in providing text-enabled toll-free numbers for utilities, courts and banks.  More than 75% of TextPower's utility customers have text-enabled their toll-free numbers and approximately 90% of the utility customers that have signed up for TextPower's messaging platform during the past three years have opted to text-enable their toll-free or local landline number.  

The advantages of text-enabled toll-free numbers are significant:

  • Customers/members call or text the same number to report outages.  Collateral, signage and advertising can all say "Call or text 866.629.8400 to report an outage!"
  • Customers/members don't have to remember to call one number and text a different one.
  • Messages sent to customers/members come from your own toll-free number instead of from a short code.  
  • Any message sent to this number is meant for your company.  If one of your customers or members isn't opted in to your list of subscribed numbers and sends a text to our shared short code that doesn't contain your keyword there's no way for us to route their message.  Having your toll-free number text-enabled eliminates that potential frustration for a member.  When someone sends a text to your number, it is meant only for you.  
  • You can use any keyword you want because nobody else will have it.  When you use a shared short code you the keyword you may want to use (e.g., "power" or "city" or "storm") may already have been secured by another user of that shared short code.
  • And now - higher speeds! At one time in the history of these text-enabled toll-free numbers speeds were limited.  Today you can expect speeds of up to 60 messages per second!
In addition to the technical advantages noted here, this is an excellent marketing tool that can help raise the level of customer/member satisfaction. It gives your customers/members the comfort of dealing with you via call or text at the same number.  

We highly recommend text-enabled toll-free numbers to all users of TextPower's platform instead of a shared short code.  But what if you don't have a toll-free number?

  1. Local landline numbers can also be text-enabled.  The throughput speed of bulk messaging is lower on local numbers and some other features may not be available.  We recommend toll-free numbers over local landlines unless no other option exists.  
  2. If you do not have a toll-free number TextPower can procure one for you at a nominal charge.  You can, if you choose, use this number for voice calls (contact our sales department for details) but you are under no obligation to do so.  

Text-enabled toll-free numbers are a great marketing and technical tool available on the TextPower messaging platform.  We hope you will take advantage of it!